Five of the best ways to have a backyard fire without the smoke

If I had to pick one thing that reminds me of camping, it would be the smell of a campfire. The sound of crackling wood and the scent of a campfire instantly transports my mind to worry free nights making s’mores under a sky full of stars.

For most of us, camping opportunities are limited to a handful of weekends a year. I think that’s what makes the backyard fire pit such an attractive proposition. With only a few steps outside of your back door you can feel connected to the outdoors and enjoy the simple pleasure of a warm fire on a cool night.

Being a good neighbor while enjoying your fire

As much as I may love the smell of fire, it doesn’t necessarily my neighbors do. Aside from the smell, smoke could cause issues for those with heart or lung disease – including asthma and COPD.

Fortunately for those wanting to be a good neighbor, there are low or no smoke options to keep your fire fun going.

Gas fire pits

Gas fire pits like the one pictured above are the most commonly available option and smoke free. Most big box hardware stores have a variety of designs and sizes of gas fire pits. Often a propane tank is all you need to get up and running. The main downside to this type of fire pit is that there is no wood smell and the heat produced can be limited.

Low smoke Wood burning firepits

A variety of low smoke fire pits have found their way to market over the last few years. They cost more than a traditional fire pit, but promise a wood burning experience with little to no smoke. They use a double wall construction that recycles airflow to reduce smoke.

Breeo Double Flame

The  Breeo Smokeless Fire Pits work through a double-wall, secondary combustion design. When the fire is burning, the walls heat up and the hot air rises through the gap between the two walls. The air then exits the wall cavity through the line of holes around the rim. This pressurized, heated oxygen mixes with the smoke and causes it to reburn. This secondary combustion is what causes your fire to smokeless.


Solo Stove Bonfire Fire Pit

The Solo Stove works much like the Breeo unit. Rising hot air, and the absence of oxygen created by the combustion process, pulls air through the bottom vent holes. This air movement fuels the fire at its base while also providing a boost of preheated air through the vent holes at the top of the burn chamber.

Click here to see why we ultimately chose the Solo Stove for our yard.

Biolite FirePit

While not your typical fire pit, the Biolite FirePit provides a smokeless and odorless wood or coal fire. It uses a usb rechargeable airflow pack to limit smoke. The versatile unit can be utilized as a fire pit or a put some veggies on a skewer for a fun hibachi-style grilling experience. You can even control the size of your flames manually or remotely with the free Bluetooth app.


HY-C FG-16 Flame Genie

The Flame Genie features a unique gravitational afterburner system that generates longer burn times without the smoke, sparks and clean-up associated with traditional wood fire pits. Flame Genie burns easy-to-handle wood pellets that produce minimal ash, making cleanup a breeze.


Looking for a portable heat option for cooking? Check out our overview of the Coleman Peak 1


Doug is a dad, designer, maker, and a kid at heart. Our family loves the outdoors and everything that comes with it. Hiking, biking, fishing and more. When you buy gear through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. This costs you nothing extra, but helps fuel our little adventures.